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The Right Reason for Organization


Organization in the Church should lead to the right kind of effect. For that to happen, we need to begin with the right reason for putting organizational structures in place.

Warning about Organizational Structures in the Church

We must guard against putting so much structure into our processes and activities that getting anything accomplished requires a complex process. That leads to people feeling stifled which turns to frustration which tends to yield minimal progress.

We need a degree of flexibility so we can make quick adjustments as needed. Flexibility, without organization, however, yields chaos and everybody doing what is right in their own eyes which often leads the perception of a church that is floundering, not seeming to really be going anywhere.

The Right Reason for Organization in the Church Leads to the Needed Balance

The Church, as a living organism, does have structure but also a responsiveness (Ephesians 4:11-13). As a living organism, then, we should maintain a sense of stability and constancy while being responsive (Ephesians 4:14).

To find the balance between structure and flexibility, organization in the church can’t be viewed or treated as an end in itself. It must be seen as a vehicle to clarify responsibilities and relationships in order to accomplish a greater good.

Question for Church Leaders: How can you simplify the process without losing the reason for which organization exists?

The Church, as a living organism, has members designed to function in specific ways but it also need a sense of coordination and interdependence (Eph. 4:11-12; 1 Cor. 12:21, 26). Without an effective means of reaching our goals that includes a place for everyone yet also maintains a level of accountability to the whole, we could find neglect of some needs and duplication in other areas, along with confusion and frustration, and hence failure to accomplish our goals.

Develop ministry descriptions that clearly convey responsibilities, parameters, and communication channels, stressing coordination with the whole. Yet, don’t unduly box in individuals’ pursuit of their passions and sense of calling.

Question for Church Leaders: Are you keeping an eye on the particulars as well as the big picture?

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